In a survey conducted by FSSAI amongst food business operators participating in the recently-held international food and hospitality event Aahar 2016, the apex food regulator was rated average in terms of operations by the participants.
Around 30% FBOs participating in the event rated FSSAI as an average organisation based on six questions that were put to them with regard to various aspects of FSSAI’s operations.
With regard to questions related to FSSAI’s operations, the FBOs were asked to rate FSSAI on a scale of 1 to 5 wherein 1 being the best.
The questions pertained to aspects such as whether FSSAI Act, 2006, was easy to understand, whether licensing regulations were easy to understand, whether packaging labelling regulations were easy to understand, how do you rate FSSAI product standards?, how do you rate FSSAI Act/ Regulations vis-à-vis international regime? And how do you rate your interaction with our food safety officer/department?
According to the results, 21% FBOs found FSSAI’s working “good” and gave it the highest rating of 1, 18% gave it the rating of 4 while 11% gave it the rating of 5 (which is the lowest).
Most of the participants (68%) at Aahar 2016 were food manufacturers wherein, total 71% people have rated FSSAI average and above, according to the survey.
The survey also found that there is lack of awareness about Schedule 4 of Licensing and Registration Regulations, 2011, filing an application for pre-arrival document and import NOC, tracking licensing application online, helpline number to seek software(FLRS/FICS) related assistance, launch of MobileApp, nearest food safety officer’s name and contact details.
According to the officials of FSSAI it was decided that an awareness campaign should therefore be conducted to make the FBOs aware of the facts about FSSAI. The survey also found that most of the FBOs were filing the licences and import through third party.
It was also decided to conduct more surveys in order to draw precise inference as the number of FBOs participating in the event was very less, said an official with FSSAI.